A Palestinian motorist was killed and his wife wounded by Israeli fire early Tuesday, the Palestinian health ministry said, in what the Israeli army described as an “attempted car-ramming attack”.

The man died “after sustaining head wounds from live fire in Bir Nabala (in the occupied West Bank) ... and his wife suffered bullet wounds to her back,” the ministry said.

The Palestinians’ official Wafa news agency said the shooting took place at dawn as the couple were travelling in their car.

The Israeli army said its troops had “thwarted an attempted car-ramming attack against a group of soldiers operating at a checkpoint south of Ramallah”.

It said the checkpoint was a temporary one, set up during “operational activity” in Bir Nabala.

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“Soldiers at the checkpoint spotted a vehicle stopping at the checkpoint and suddenly accelerating towards another group of soldiers operating in the area, in a way that endangered the lives of the soldiers.

“The soldiers responded with fire in order to thwart the threat,” the army said.

Wafa identified the dead man as Osama Sidqi Mansur, 42, citing local sources.

The news agency said there had been clashes between Palestinian residents and the Israeli army in the Bir Nabala area on Monday evening.

Israel has occupied the West Bank since the Six-Day War of 1967.

There has been a string of lone wolf attack on troops in the territory since 2015, most of them stabbings or car-rammings.

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